Bujadelle, a small village where my old primary school teacher lives, is just under 2km away by car. As the crow flies, or, perhaps more pertinently, as the large black intact male dog runs, it’s just a kilometre away. At first we thought Ella was merely happily barking at a friend down the hill, but then her friend turned up at the front of the house, and after some coaxing came into the kitchen. He had a collar (albeit without a phone number to call), and was obviously well-cared-for, so we gave him some food and prepared to keep him inside with our two for the night. And then he started getting somewhat frisky with Ella…
Ella’s and his puppies would have been magnificent, but Ella isn’t even a year old yet, even if we had room in Glasgow to raise a litter of puppies, which we don’t. So we sadly ushered him outside - and found the lengths a large smart dog will go to if there’s an attractive bitch in heat inside a house.
Opening doors: yes, he knew how to do that, so we pushed the door handles up so you’d need a strong downward force to open them. Problem is, he was large, determined and smart enough to be able to do that, and also to jump over or wriggle under the fence in the back garden - which we realised when we suddenly heard Ella and big black dog playing together outside when surely she’d been inside only moments ago. So we brought her back in, locked all the doors, and I went to bed so I could drive him to the police station in the morning where they’d scan him and find his owner. Only to be regularly awoken by a large dog barking or howling every half hour or so, and our dogs barking back.
Eventually he went to sleep under a tree in our front garden, and then went away for a while before returning late in the afternoon. At that point his owners had realised he’d got out, and our neighbours had recognised him and phoned them, so everyone was happily reunited. And at one point I’d like to go and see them in Bujadelle, because he truly was a magnificent dog: very large, jet-black with brown accents, a coat like a flat-coated retriever but wiry, intelligent and good-natured.
In the mean time, though, our plans for tomorrow are scuppered. There’s a dog show that happens every year and we were looking forward to going with our two, but taking a bitch in heat to a large assembly of dogs, all of whom are trying to be on their best behaviour… no, that’s not fair to anybody.